The Osaka Sake Awards 2020 (Shiga, Kyoto, Osaka, Hyogo, Nara, and Wakayama Prefectures) are held in accordance with the following aims:
The Kansai region, which includes Osaka City, Kobe City, and Kyoto City, is well known for its sake consumption, and both Nada (Coastal Nishinomiya City and Kobe City) and Fushimi (southern Kyoto City) are Japan's largest sake producing areas. The Kansai region possesses state-of-the-art technology for sake making, and is well known for producing high-quality sakes.
The Kansai region extends from the Sea of Japan, with its colder oceanic climate, to the Pacific Ocean, with its milder climate. Consequently, there are a large number of breweries that produce a wide variety of rich, mellow, and crisp sakes.
Ginjo-shu (“Labeling Standards for the Manufacturing Process and Quality of Sake [National Tax Agency Notice No. 8, 1989]”) produced during the 2019 brewing year (July 2019 to June 2020).
Warmed sake made using rice with a rice-polishing ratio of at least 60%, with no limitation on brewing year.
September 29 (Tuesday), 30 (Wednesday) and October 2 (Friday), 2020
Alcoholic Beverage Evaluation Office, Fourth Floor, Osaka National Government Building No. 3
Evaluations were conducted by a panel of 57 judges (individuals under the age of 65 years at the time of the quality assessments with broad knowledge and expertise in the quality assessment of alcoholic beverages, such as staff members of prefectural brewing-related organizations and toji, or master sake brewers).
Ginjo-shu was evaluated at room temperature, and warmed sake was evaluated at approximately 45°C after heating in a vessel containing water at 50-52°C.
Overall quality was evaluated for the following qualities of sake deemed to be “good”.
Ginjo-shu: Harmony of aroma and flavor that is distinctive of ginjo-shu and present in a matured and mellow taste.
Warmed sake: Harmony of aroma and flavor that elicits a desire that cannot be sated.
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In the 2019 brewing year, the effects of high summer temperatures contributed to a tendency for harder rice with lower solubility, while warmer than normal weather persisted through January and February at the height of the brewing season. Despite occasional cold snaps, the year proved a challenging one for managing the fermentation process. Given these circumstances, sake producers outdid themselves in their application of sake making techniques mastered through rigorous daily training and their observance of appropriate storage methods in the heat of summer. As a result, many of the sakes entered this year were characterized by excellent quality with well-balanced aroma and flavor.
Many of the sakes were of fine quality, combining the velvety mouth-feel characteristic of ginjo-shu with a splendid fruity bouquet.
The entries were richly varied, with an abundance of distinct characteristics. Some were light and soft on the tongue, some conveyed a robust and solid body, and still others had been aged to achieve a smooth and comfortable finish.
Breweries whose entries received superior scores for quality were awarded the Osaka Regional Taxation Bureau Commissioner's “Excellence Prize”.